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When and why people engage in different forms of proactive behavior: interactive effects of self-construals and work characteristics

Wu, Chia-Huei and Parker, Sharon and Wu, Long-Zeng and Lee, Cynthia (2017) When and why people engage in different forms of proactive behavior: interactive effects of self-construals and work characteristics. Academy of Management Journal. ISSN 0001-4273

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Abstract

When and why do people engage in different forms of proactive behavior at work? We propose that, as a result of a process of trait activation, employees with different types of self-construal engage in distinct forms of proactive behavior if they work in environments consistent with their self-construals. In an experimental Study 1 (N = 61), we examined the effect of self-construals on proactivity and found that people primed with interdependent self-construals engaged in more work unit-oriented proactive behavior when job interdependence also was manipulated. Priming independent self-construals did not enhance career-oriented proactive behavior, even when we manipulated job autonomy. In a field Study 2 (N = 205), we found that employees with interdependent self-construals working in jobs with high interdependence reported higher work unit commitment and higher work unit-oriented proactive behavior than employees in low interdependent jobs. Employees with independent self-construals working in jobs with high autonomy also exhibited stronger career commitment and more career-oriented proactive behavior than those in jobs with low autonomy. This research offers a theoretical framework to explain how dispositional and situational factors interactively shape people's engagement in different forms of proactive behavior.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: http://amj.aom.org/
Additional Information: © 2017 AOM
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Sets: Departments > Management
Identification Number: 10.5465/amj.2013.1064
Date Deposited: 03 Apr 2017 08:46
Last Modified: 03 Apr 2017 08:48
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/71991

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